Google’s Chrome is the world’s most used desktop browser with a market share that exceeds 50 percent. Despite its popularity, Chrome is also notorious for being a battery and resource hog. Google has been promising to offer improvements to battery life and has also rolled out numerous quick fixes and updates, but none has helped so far. Meanwhile, Microsoft had been busy conducting its own set of experiments to test the battery life on laptops to prove that its Edge browser that was introduced with Windows 10, offers better battery efficiency compared to Google Chrome and other competitors such as Mozilla Firefox and Opera.
Microsoft performed three separate tests to compare Edge browser with three of the leading browsers – Google Chrome, Opera and Firefox. In the first test, the team measured power consumption in a controlled lab environment. The company used sites such as Facebook, Google, Amazon, Wikipedia, YouTube and more, where users mostly spend their time on.
In the second test, the team used real-world energy telemetry from millions of devices that run on Windows 10. Lastly, the company used time-lapse videos on all four browsers to perform same tasks until the battery ran out.
While the laptop running the test on Google Chrome lasted for 4 hours and 19 minutes, the one with Microsoft Edge lasted a good 7 hours and 22 minutes. The laptop with Mozilla Firefox and Opera browsers lasted for 5 hours and 9 minutes, and 6 hours and 18 minutes, respectively.
“We designed Microsoft Edge from the ground up to prioritize power efficiency and deliver more battery life, without any special battery saving mode or changes to the default settings. For browsing activities, our tests show Microsoft Edge is a more energy-efficient browser on Windows 10, with up to 36%-53% more battery life to get what you need done – whether you’re studying at the library, researching dream vacation destinations, or checking in with your friends on social networks,” Jason Weber, team director of Microsoft Edge wrote in a blog post.
Opera recently added ‘power saving mode’ to its browser, which the company claims to save up to 50 percent of battery life on laptops. However, it is important to note that Microsoft Edge does not boast any such mode. Microsoft has also mentioned that it will be adding more power-saving features and fewer CPU cycles which will allow the browser to minimize the impact of flash advertisements, background activities and consume less memory.
Microsoft is trying hard to win users over its Edge browser, but it still lacks some key features that you would get on Chrome or Firefox. While browser extensions are one of these features missing from Edge browser, support for the same along with other improvements is due to come as a part of Windows 10 Anniversary Update which will be rolled out later this summer.